Thursday, August 23, 2012

unconference weekend, day 2

nothing says adventure like carpooling.  given the right people and the right vehicle, road trips can be awesome!

in this case, the right people were jen, sela, and linus, and the right vehicle was theirs.  mamas up front, boys in the middle, girls in the back.  something for everyone.  especially dutch brothers (boys have smoothies, girls have not-so-hot-chocolate, mamas get their caffeine fix of choice.  thanks, steve, for my gift card!)



unconference weekend continued with a trip to the bay area discovery museum.  it was magical!  i can't believe we hadn't been there before!  (actually, it's because i get cranky driving all the way to san francisco, especially by myself, and i know that with a largish museum, both of my children would want to see and do different things and i could not accommodate all of that so i tend to avoid those kinds of situations.  since there was another adult present to help mind our offspring and diana is fairly self-sufficient and could go off to explore with sela, i could stay with ander and things could work out for the best.)
view of ander's beloved golden gate bridge from the decks of the museum

i love it when stores have a play area.  when ander picks something up and asks to play with it, i can say "yes" rather than "no, honey, we're not buying that and opening the package."  he loves playing with thomas trains but does not ask to "take them home" and opted instead for a very cool fire truck with a mega-extending ladder with a bucket at the end.

shopping in the gift store first is sometimes a good idea.  then there's no rush at the end of the visit, and one can spend the entire time being happy with one's well-thought-out, non-rushed purchase.
this is one of the very few places ander spent time indoors.  water tables are awesome, especially when there are materials to build boats of your own imagination, an option to add wind, and no instructions to tell you how to do any of it.  the kids can figure that out all on their own, thank you very much.  the signage is for the adults to read while they are standing back and giving kids plenty of room to play.
bamboo boat makes cool sounds when you stomp on it.  the rigging has bells.  the bucket onboard has little drums.

rather than being in one large building, this museum has several separate units, each with a theme.  i love the use of stumps as seats for drawing on chalk slates.  and drawing on the ground is fine, too.  art and inspiration can strike anywhere.  it's important to have tools at hand.
construction zone!  wonderfully ground gravel, perfectly-sized tools.  funnels, dump trucks, and lots of open space.






easily ander's favorite of the day.  up the rope ladder, down the rope ladder.  inviting new friends to check out the view.

ahoy, mateys!

sunken treasure
i've got the music in me!

so that's what hatches in a nest like this!
we didn't even make it over here to explore.  i so want to go into the dark seclusion of the twisted branch caves.

another fabulous use of stumps.  much more fun and eye-pleasing than stairs.
naturally, it was hard to pull ourselves away when the museum closed.  a yummy dinner (pasta, however you like it) took the edge off, and it was a pleasant drive home.

successful weekend.  i wanted something as a substitute for the community feeling we get at our homeschool conference - this really worked for me.  the kids got an adventure with their friends, the mamas had heartfelt discussions during the drives and strengthened our connections with each other.

i think we need to do this more often.


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